6 January 2014

Rwanda: RBS Closes Down Two Plants Over Contaminated Yoghurt

Two milk processing plants have been closed down by the Rwanda Bureau of Standards for flouting safety standards.

Philip Nzaire, the standards body quality assurance director, said Rubirizi Dairy in Kicukiro District and Nyanza milk processing plant in Nyanza District were making contaminated yoghurt that poses a big health risk to consumers.

The standards body said Joy, Ingabo, Rubirizi Dairy and Nyanza Dairy yoghurt brands were found with bacteria that is dangerous to humans.

"We have recalled some of the products from the market and destroyed them. We call on the public to be vigilant and report to us if they find any of the above products because they are dangerous to their lives," Nzaire said.

Dr. Mark Cyubairo Bagabe, the RBS director general, said the plants would remain closed until they have met the required safety standards.

"We are reminding all wholesalers, retailers and consumers of milk and milk products to reject products that don't have proof of safety compliance," Bagabe said in a statement.

About three months ago, the Rwanda Bureau of Standards impounded one tonne of Fonterra milk powder that was imported into the country from New Zealand.

Earlier, it had closed down a factory that was making uncertified juice in Kicukiro District.

Last year, RBS stepped up efforts to stamp out food contamination partly by providing technical support to processors and sensitising the public to identify food products that do not meet safety requirements.

The standards body targets to reduce contamination in processed food by 80 per cent by 2018.

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